Yielding Gender Feminism, Deconstruction and the History of Philosophy

by Penelope Deutscher

Yielding Gender Feminism, Deconstruction and the History of Philosophy Synopsis

Traditional accounts of the feminist history of philosophy have viewed reason as associated with masculinity and subsequent debates have been framed by this assumption. Yet recent debates in deconstruction have shown that gender has never been a stable matter. In the history of philosophy 'female' and 'woman' are full of ambiguity. What does deconstruction have to offer feminist criticism of the history of philosophy? Yielding Gender explores this question by examining three crucial areas; the issue of gender as 'troubled'; deconstruction; and feminist criticism of the history of philosophy. The first part of the book discusses the work of Judith Butler, Jacques Derrida, and contemporary French feminist philosophy including key figures such as Luce Irigiray. Particular attention is given to the possibilities offered by deconstruction for understanding the history of philosophy. The second part considers and then challenges feminist interpretations of some key figures in the history of philosophy. Penelope Deutscher sketches how Rousseau, St. Augustine and Simone de Beauvoir have described gender and argues that their readings of gender are in fact empowered by gender's own contradiction and instability rather than limited by it.

Yielding Gender Feminism, Deconstruction and the History of Philosophy Press Reviews

One of the more compelling ventures in feminist philosophy that I have seen. I think that a book with this range, and with the kind of precise and cautious thinking exhibited by this author might just establish a new standard in the field. -Judith Butler, University of California, Berkeley

Book Information

ISBN: 9780415139458
Publication date: 16th October 1997
Author: Penelope Deutscher
Publisher: Routledge an imprint of Taylor & Francis Ltd
Format: Paperback
Pagination: 232 pages
Categories: Feminism & feminist theory, History of Western philosophy,

About Penelope Deutscher

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